The Los Angeles Lakers need to add some depth and scoring to their backcourt, especially since star point guard Steve Nash has played in only two games this season.
Lakers' top PG trade target, of course, has long been Pau's pal Jose Calderon. But Raps, to this point, want to attach Jose to a bigger deal— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) December 12, 2012
Two other available PGs that I have to believe Lakers will look at in addition to exploring trade options: Mike James and Jonny Flynn— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) December 12, 2012
The best decision for Los Angeles would be to pursue Calderon, who is a true point guard with lots of experience playing with Lakers forward Pau Gasol from their time with the Spanish Olympic and World Championship teams.
However, it may be difficult to keep Gasol and acquire a player of Calderon's caliber. He is one of the Raptors' best players, and they need to get a ton of value in return for him if he's traded.
Calderon could provide the Lakers with consistent outside shooting and about 10 points and seven assists per game. He would also give Los Angeles a great free-throw shooter, which the team desperately needs right now.
The Raptors star is a career 86.7 percent free-throw shooter and is shooting 90.2 percent from the foul line this year. He is the best fit for the Lakers, but if they cannot acquire him, Raja Bell is the next best choice.
Bell is a good one-on-one perimeter defender, which is also something the Lakers need in their backcourt, and he can help the team's transition offense and defense.
Acquiring Bell would give Kobe Bryant the option of not covering the opposing team's best perimeter player each game, which would allow Bryant to focus more on his offense.
The Lakers should look at pursuing Calderon or Bell if they want to make improvements to their backcourt this season.
Some of the best moves teams can make before the trade deadline are for players who defend well and can do the little things that impact the outcomes of games. Calderon and Bell are two of these types of players.